Whether you are conducting research for academics or want to increase the revenue of your business, it follows several systematic steps to achieve the desired goals. Research requires you to include several sources of information in a study to validate your claim. It is a long process that starts from title selection, passes through a series of steps, includes analytical and critical evaluation procedures, and ends with stating findings and concluding the research. To effectively complete all these steps, you must know how to judge the depth of research. Depth of research refers to the process that begins with a bird’s eye view of the topic. You can use many techniques to judge the research’s depth before selecting any study as source material for your research. This article discusses the seven best ways to judge the depth of research.
1. Analyse the title of the study:
The first way to analyse the depth of research is to see what the study’s title reflects. The way a title is organised, keywords used to make the title attractive, and terminologies used to highlight methods of research all reflect the extent of research. If the title contains highly subject-specific terminologies, there will be bright chances that the research has been conducted by following good research practices. However, if you feel any issues in the topic analysis, you may get PhD dissertation help for your research.
2. Read the abstract and clear your views about the research to better judge the research depth:
An abstract is a summary of complete research. It aims to tell the reader what the study is all about. It is the most readable part of scientific research. It highlights all the necessary information that a reader must know to consider a study reliable. The abstract’s essential parts are the problem statement, study objectives, research methodology, analysis techniques, and results. People usually read abstracts to clear their understanding of the research paper. Thus, reviewing a well-drafted research abstract is another important way to judge the depth of research.
3. Spend time on the rationale of the study:
The rationale of a study is the reason for conducting research. It is a very important part of a study as it justifies why a study is conducted and what circumstances the world will have to face if the problem under study remains unresolved. Entry-level research is not sufficient to draft an effective rationale. Thus, if you want to know the extent of research for conducting a study, you must analyse how effectively the rationale is drafted.
4. Pay special attention to research questions:
Regardless of the discipline, almost all studies aim to answer some questions. These questions address research-specific issues and problems (qualitative and quantitative). Both qualitative and quantitative research questions can be classified into different categories:
- Exploratory research questions
- Predictive questions
- Interpretive questions
- Descriptive questions
- Relationship-based questions
- Comparative questions
Every researcher has to choose one type of research question according to the nature of the study. The level of research and understanding of researchers help decide the type of research questions. Thus, to judge the extent of research, you need to cross-match whether research questions are relevant to the aims and objectives of a study. Also, you need to find whether the researcher has chosen the right type of research questions to address the problem of a study. If, after analysis, you find ‘yes’ in answer to all these questions, it means the research study is well-researched, and you can trust its finding.
5. Note whether the chosen data collection method is the most appropriate one:
There are three important methods of data collection: primary, secondary, and mixed. Each method of data collection has its own merits and demerits. Primary data collection refers to the direct involvement of researchers in the data collection process. Secondary data collection, on the other hand, allows researchers to explore the online libraries, websites and books to collect data that can prove or disprove a point. The mixed-method uses both secondary and primary data collection ways to generalise results. If, after analysis, you think the researcher used the best possible data collection method and supported his choice with logical reasoning, then you can consider the study important for conducting your research.
6. Read the methodology section and data analysis section to find flaws in them:
Research methodology is a specific set of procedures or techniques researchers use to find, analyse, and interpret data relevant to the topic of interest. It is the part of research that allows researchers to critically evaluate the reliability and validity of a study. Another less reported role of research methodology is to judge the depth of research. If the research methodology depicts credibility, transferability, conformability, relevancy, and dependability, you can conclude that a researcher conducted a study using good research practices.
Simultaneously, the data analysis follows a rigorous step-by-step process, requiring different skills. Research is the only skill that is equally important to accomplish each step effectively. Thus, the right analysis techniques and tool selection reflect good quality research.
7. Reference is the best way to know whether a researcher used credible sources of information:
The last but very important method to judge the depth of research is to review the in-text citation and bibliographic list. The in-text citation helps you know about the original author of a study, and the bibliographic list tells about the resources of the study. A study will be considered reliable if it includes all relevant, credible, and authentic sources. Furthermore, if a bibliography shows a variety of source material such as Books, Journals, and databases, it means a researcher conducted in-depth research to complete a study.
Research is an unending process. To conduct it properly, you must use several methods and approaches. Judging the research depth is one way you must consider while choosing any source material for your research. The above-discussed seven best methods to judge the depth of research suggest you review seven different parts of a research paper. Suppose these seven parts reflect high-quality research practices, including the title, abstract, rationale, research questions methods, data collection, data analysis, and references. In that case, you will get positive remarks about the research quality of a paper.